Week of March 10, 2014
Part 1 41:11
Grateful Dead 6/17/75 Winterland, San Francisco
“Bob Fried Memorial Boogie”
INTRO BY BILL GRAHAM
ME AND MY UNCLE
HELP ON THE WAY->
Part 2 14:47
Black Mountain Boys, Live at the Ashkenaz
LAZY FARMER BOY
Pete Seeger, Dangerous Songs!?
The “Bob Fried Memorial Boogie” was the second of only four live performances by the Grateful Dead in 1975. The band was working in Bob Weir’s studio developing the material that was released later in the year on Blues for Allah. This event, a benefit for the family of poster artist Bob Fried, was billed as “Jerry Garcia and Friends” plus Kingfish, Keith and Donna, and the Mirrors. What a thrill when it turned out to be the whole Grateful Dead, with wonderful new songs! They opened with “Crazy Fingers” and then delivered some old favorites, before closing the first set with more great new music: a instrumental “Help on the Way” into “Slipknot!” and “Franklin’s Tower.” The tape (which came to me from Matt Smith of Portland’s KBOO), is missing the first few songs; this week’s show includes all of set 1 that is usable. We’ll hear all of set 2 in next week’s program.
My wife, Rita Hurault, worked with Pete Seeger on the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater in the ’70s. “When he found out I knew how to do layout and pasteup, I was brought up to the house to help put together a handbook for crew members,” she recalls. Rita got to know Pete and Toshi Seeger pretty well; after Pete’s passing in late January, she and her old friend Ed Renehan, a longtime Seeger associate, reminisced about Pete on Tales from the Golden Road (on the SiriusXM Grateful Dead Channel) on February 2. Listen here.
The Black Mountain Boys was one of the many bluegrass bands that Jerry Garcia played in in Palo Alto in the early ’60s. On March 8, 2013, there was a reunion of sorts at the Ashkenaz Music and Dance Community Center. Original members Eric Thompson and David Nelson were joined by another veteran of that period, Rick Shubb (banjo), plus Bay Area bluegrass stalwarts Paul Shelasky (fiddle) and Paul Knight (bass). Eric Thompson recalled the Black Mountain Boys in an article in Berkeleyside previewing the 3/8/13 gig.
I was at the Ashkenaz with my digital recorder, and in January of this year I got together with Eric to produce the recording for use as a fund-raising premium on the KPFA Grateful Dead Marathon (which featured another live performance by Nelson and Thompson and friends). Everyone was happy enough with the result that our friends at Festivalink agreed to make it available. Check it out here. It’s supposed to be available on iTunes and HDTracks, but I haven’t been able to locate it on those sites yet.
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